How to set up the core of your music career in 2020

January 24, 2020

We’re in a new decade. Throughout the past decade, so much happened in our beloved world of music.

New independent artists popped up, old structures and beliefs were torn down, and musical diversity exploded (once again).

In all this amazing mess, here you are. And you want to achieve something.

What is it that you want to achieve though?

When I ask this question, most artists reply with some generic babble. And – this doesn’t come as a surprise – most of them don’t have a clear vision. They think they have, but they don’t.

And that makes me sad!

They are indoctrinated by the music industry and think they wanna become the next superstar or overnight success. And all they have to do is just to play music all day long to get discovered. And then, when this happens to one out of a million, everyone confirms their assumption.

(Better build your music career on the prospect of winning a lottery…)

Oh, and did you know that 49 out of 50 signed musicians get dumped by the record labels each year?

We can’t blame them. Record labels help promising artists to get big(ger). They are businesses. Run by clever people. Why should they cling on to invaluable assets?

Imagine running a business and employing 200 people but only 4 work for you. The rest is just eating your snacks and chatting on the corridor. Hello, business failure…

So instead of cherishing outdated and bigoted beliefs, here’s what you can do instead:

Find out why you are in music after all.

Once you know why you’re doing what you’re doing, everything else becomes easier. You can build your whole career on this, heck, your whole life. Having a purposeful clear vision helps you slash your way through the jungle of limiting beliefs and other bullshit.

But first a warning:

If you are not 100% honest with yourself, you set yourself up for failure.

And if you think it’s not important to know why you’re doing it because you’re already doing it, just wait for the next dip in your life. It will come. And when it arrives, you need your core beliefs and guiding principles to know your path.

Yep, I’m sounding like a self-help life coach… hahaha. However, I hope you get the point.

I’ve experienced this so many times in my life. And knowing where I wanted to go and WHY I wanted to do so helped me more than big time.

For example, when I still was enrolled at the university, I didn’t want to finish my studies more than one time. It was boring, too theoretical, outdated, only allowed thinking inside the box, and much more. Then I remembered why I wanted to finish it. And everything came together. And in the end, I don’t even use my degrees. The why helped me through university. However, if I had asked why before university, I may have ended up somewhere else. My Why wasn’t deep enough.

To go extremely deep with your Why, ask why again and again.

For example, “I want to make a living from my music” is too generic. There’s no emotion, no soul-searching, nothing special involved. It sounds like a first-grader who’s asked what she wanna be when she grows up. It’s a start though. The secret here is to ask why repeatedly. Build a cascade of whys – falling deeper and deeper into your core beliefs and guiding principles.

To continue the example, let’s ask why again. Maybe, “because I don’t want to work in a corporate job” is the next reply. Followed by, “because I can’t express my emotions and creativity as an employee of someone else.” You see, the deep why is materializing piece by piece. In the end, you might end up with something weird. Don’t worry, be honest. This is about you. About your life’s journey. No matter how old you are. And one last thing, the deeper you express your emotions, the better your Why.

But now, after all my bla bla, it’s your turn.

Why are you in music?

Start with this question, go deeper and deeper until you feel you got it. Next, dare to reply and tell me.

I read and reply to every message.

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